The fever of NFTs, tokens that allow the exchange of virtual but unique elements on the blockchain, also struck Edward Snowden, the activist and American whistleblower who has put his first digital work on sale in recent hours. The image was sold on the NFT Foundation.app auction portal for 2,224 Ethereum (the second largest cryptocurrency after Bitcoin), the equivalent of $ 5.4 million. The artwork depicts the face of Snowden made using pages in which a US appeals court declared Snowden’s uncovered surveillance program illegal.
The work, called “Stay Free”, was auctioned on the portal for 24 hours from a starting price of 2 Ethereum, around 4,800 dollars. The profits from the sale will not go to the activist but to his own Press Freedom Foundation , the association that protects journalists from government surveillance of which Snowden has been president since 2016. “I want to thank all of those who have tracked this sale in the last 24 hours, ”Snowden tweeted. “The deepest gratitude goes to everyone from the Press Freedom Foundation to those who participated in the charity auction. You are helping us create a better world. Stay free. “
The NFT phenomenon is among the most interesting of the last period. It is mainly known as crypto art, although these tokens can be associated with any virtual object: we are talking about the creation and sale of works made possible by cryptographic technologies that ensure the possession of these goods to one person . It’s the opposite of the web, where everything is replicable: an image, a video, a text are sequences of bits that can be duplicated without limits. NFTs, on the other hand, are able to certify unequivocally and indisputably that only one of the possible infinite copies of a digital good is the original. Although they are based on the same technology, NFTs have a huge difference compared to tokens of Bitcoin, Ethereum and other virtual currencies: Non-fungible tokens are unique and non-exchangeable: one is not worth the other.